Rolle, Switzerland – Infiniti has unveiled its first hybrid, the M35 Hybrid, at the Geneva Motor Show.
A decoupling V6 engine, 50 kW electric motor built into the seven-speed automatic transmission, and exceptionally fast charge and discharge response from the lithium-ion battery pack produce a hybrid that is electrically powered for more of the time, and at higher speeds, than conventional hybrids.
The technology, which previewed in the Essence concept coupe at the Geneva show in 2009, has been named Infiniti Direct Response Hybrid. The company said it is the core of the future Infiniti performance.
Based on the all-new M sedan, the first M to go on sale in Europe, the M35 Hybrid uses a front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout based around a drivetrain featuring a one motor/two clutch system. The first clutch is installed between the 3.5-litre V and the electric motor, allowing full decoupling of the V6 when in both electric and power regeneration modes, to reduce mechanical drag and boost the efficiency of the electric motor. In tests performed in the U.S. in everyday driving, the M35 Hybrid was able to drive in electric-only mode for as much as 50 per cent of the time.
The M is scheduled to go on sale in Western Europe in September, with the M35 Hybrid due to arrive in the spring of 2011.